IND vs ENG Test Series: Monty Panesar’s big prediction to InsideSport, ‘Kohli’s India will beat England & Rishabh Pant will be the star’

INDIA vs ENGLAND: Monty Panesar's big prediction for Virat Kohli & Co, says 'India will win the series' and Rishabh Pant will be the X-Factor
INDIA vs ENGLAND: Monty Panesar's big prediction for Virat Kohli & Co, says 'India will win the series' and Rishabh Pant will be the X-Factor

INDIA vs ENGLAND Test Series – Monty Panesar Big Prediction: Virat Kohli led Indian team will take on Joe Root led England in the five-match Test series commencing from August 4 at Trent Bridge, Nottingham. Ahead of the mouthwatering contest in the whites which might race some hearts and also witness on-field sledging, spoke EXCLUSIVELY to former England spinner Monty Panesar, who has some big predictions for the series. According to him, ‘India will win the series and beat England in England’

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Yet another major highlight of the interaction with Panesar was on Rishabh Pant, who could be the star of the series for India as per the former English player. India’s wicketkeeper-batsman- Rishabh Pant’s repertoire and capabilities know no bounds. His off-late propensity with the bat on the field and more so, his skills behind the wickets have well seeped in minds of cricket veterans, analysts and former players.

During InsideSport’s exclusive interview with former England player- Monty Panesar, the English veteran reckoned that Rishabh Pant is the X factor.

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INDIA vs ENGLAND Test Series – Monty Panesar Big Prediction: Check out the interview

Straightaway – What do you think will be the result of the India-England Test series?

I think India have got a great chance of winning the Test series. They are a strong team. It would be interesting to see how England play spin. I am sure Virat would want to bring plenty of spinners, so India got a chance of winning the Test series. India will win the series is my prediction.

But why do you think India is the favourite to win the series? What so special about this Indian team? 

I think the answer is Rishabh Pant. Pant according to me could be the star of the series for India. If they are in a good position, he can accelerate and win and in a session can take the game away. And in a tough situation, I think he will be exciting. Everybody will be going to watch him; he is the X factor everyone wants to see.

And for England, I think Ollie Robinson should be playing. He could cause a huge problem for the India team.

INDIA vs ENGLAND Test Series – Monty Panesar Big Prediction: Check out the interview

India didn’t get enough time to adjust to the English conditions before the WTC Final. Now that they are there for nearly a month, how do you see them do in the Test series?

Yeah, India have a good chance in the Test series. They have got more time to prepare. I think they are always going to struggle with really tall high-arm bowlers. I think the inclusion of Ollie Robinson could pose a threat for them. But this is going to be a tougher series I think. With Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad have bowled really well and England can effectively play without a spinner. Jack Leach probably will play because of the conditions in August. But it’s interesting to see that India do struggle against the taller bowlers.

Apart from Virat and Rahane, not many batsmen from the current India team have done well in England. What do you think the batsmen like Rohit Sharma and Pujara must do to do well?

I think Virat and Rahane both do well in English conditions. This is an opportunity for Rohit Sharma to really prove himself that he is not just good in Test cricket in India but in England as well. And Pujara is an important batsman. Especially when that ball is doing a little bit, he will do bat and just stay there similar to what Rahul Dravid did in EnglandHe used to brilliantly not play against the moving ball. That’s the kind of role I will be looking for these guys to do. Rohit Sharma, it is a big series for him. He really needs to have a good series in England.

Also read: India Tour of England: Former England player Peter Trego declares Joe Root & Co will seek revenge over Virat Kohli’s India

Post-Shubman Gill’s injury, India’s opening pair has gone for a toss. What according to you would be India’s ideal order for conditions in England?

Well, I think the opening partnership is interesting. They would probably get Rohit Sharma to open the batting. They may bring in Prithvi Shaw, he is good. Number 3 may even see- it is optional, Pujara would go there. Virat Kohli at number 4. Then at 5, we have got Ajnikya Rahane. Number 6 Rishabh Pant. So, that looks to be a very good team.

Compared to 2018, how much have the pitches evolved in England? Do you think it will be the pacer who will dominate or the likes of Ashwin and Leach will have some advantage?

I think the pitches will help spin, especially this time of the year. The question is really going to be India to score; they need to get first-innings runs. Anything between 300-350 is going to be very competitive for England. So, even for the spinners to be in the game, India would need to get runs. Then their spinners can really put pressure on the England team.

Also read: India Tour of England: Another green top to welcome Virat Kohli & Co? BCCI shares 1st look of Nottingham pitch; See pics

Moving ball and swing conditions in England have troubled Cheteshwar Pujara, especially in England. Could this be his last chance?

Yeah, Pujara has struggled against the moving ball. I don’t think it could be his last chance. He is such a fantastic player. They could replace him and possibly they may bring in Agarwal, who is a good player as well. There is KL Rahul as well. Pujara needs to prove himself in these conditions. He is a fine player, is a very very good cricketer. He is one of those who can bat long in the innings which is really important.

One of the engaging aspects in the India-England clash has been Virat Kohli-James Anderson’s rivalry. Who according to you would emerge favourites?

Again that’s going to be great Kohli vs Anderson. Again if the ball is moving around, we have seen conditions completely change in England. There is a lot more rain, especially in the last week or so. It’s been heavy rain. And I think we haven’t seen this kind of rustle between India-England for a long time. So, I think if there is a lot of hot weather like we expected to be in August rather saw rain on and off, like heavy showers and then a bit of sunshine around, it could favour James Anderson. Because any overcast conditions can definitely help England.

Ollie Robinson emerged well in the one-off Test he played against New Zealand in August this year. Would he get a chance alongside reliable Anderson-Broad duo?

I think Ollie Robinson should be playing the first Test match. He is a brilliant bowler. He is a good all-rounder. It’s going to be difficult just to adjust to the likes of Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad. He can be enough to bowl and doing like Jim, can be very similar to face but I think Ollie Robinson being that really tall bowler. The height can be just seeing the likes of Kylie Jamieson they did really well against India because he comes from such a high height. And that is I think going to be a problem for India of how they are going to adjust to that. So, I think England should play Robinson. I would like to see him play because he could be a decisive factor between both teams.

INDIA vs ENGLAND Test Series – Monty Panesar Big Prediction: Check out the interview

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